LOS ANGELES - It may be in the Fairfax District, but it’s so close to the heart of Hollywood. We’re talking about Pink's Hot Dogs along La Brea Avenue. That famous hot dog stand owned by the Pink family since 1939 when Betty and Paul Pink ran a hot dog cart to make a buck.
Hot dogs were 10 cents back then. And, until 2020 they were in the pink. But, then came that other P-word... Pandemic.
According to Richard Pink, Paul’s son, "It affected us a lot."
It affected them by forcing a pair a months-long painful closures. Says Richard Pink, "It absolutely hurt us. We didn’t draw any money out of Pinks in over a year. We wanted to be sure we could cover the cost of employees' salaries, the cost of goods... keep the business going."
And, the reopening - not once but twice - cost a lot! Pink says, "We had to cover all of this investment and all the new protocols."
He’s talking about all of the new Plexiglas, stanchions and markings for social distancing he’s installed.
And, they paid their longtime employees until the workers could get their unemployment checks like Luz Acosta who told us, "I’m feeling really happy" about being back at work.
The mask and shield muffle her words, but we’re pretty sure there’s a smile behind those facial coverings.
And, those safety precautions. One customer in the line called it "Social Distance perfect... yes... especially with the baby."
Others were glad to help the restaurant kick off their reopening recognizing what they and other restaurants have been through is "tough".
Others in the line that took about 30-minutes to navigate were excited to get hot dogs named after famous people like Marlon Brando or Martha Stewart or Movies like JAWs or Lord of the Rings. But, this Lord of the Hot Dog Stands has meant a lot to people like Pete Lik.
He says, "We suffered. We didn’t have Pinks."
And, to Gloria Pink... this was a good day! Richard’s wife says, "I’m feeling really good. This is kind of a celebration."